"Can I see the rest of your tattoo?" the girl standing behind me in the line at Blockbuster asks me on this lonesome Friday night.
"Uhm, ya," I answer, glancing around to see how many people are looking as I lift up my shirt and feel rather publically naked. It happens... a lot.
Once she takes a good look at my artwork (or the horrific tragedy I put on my already perfect body as my mom would put it), she responds with, "That is so cool! That must've hurt! How many sittings? How much did it cost?"
She never asks me what it means, rarely does anyone.
Now, if you don't know me or the backside of me (odd?) very well, I'll briefly summarize.. My entire back is tattooed as one black & grey peice; a flock of doves flying up and out of an old, gothic city comprised of cobble stone, rolling hills, a church and a school. The land and buildings below represent my society, my influences. My journey is the flight of the flock and I am the top dove highest in the sky essentially, escaping. In order to know who I am, what I believe and what I am made of, flying away from it all is a must.
I can be free to be myself.
That was the epiphany I had a few years ago, back when I was a frustrated, sad bird wandering on the ground of this city, being told what to think, what to do, what is black and what is white. One day, I woke up and found all shades of grey and suddenly, I could fly. And I did. Away from university, becoming a teacher, my religion, my town, my home, the bars built within my own self..
Maybe that all sounds like a cheesy movie picked up from Blockbuster on a lonesome Friday night. But that's alright because I like cheese (especially Jalapeno Havarti if you're ever wondering) and because I am happy.
Now, I met Jen when I was shooting/she was modeling for Chickenware (a few posts down). Myself barely reaching 5'4 and her at 5'11, Jen could just about tower over me with all of her fabulousness. We recently headed down to a cool little place my hubs discovered in Chilliwack and took some shots for her portfolio. The following portraits of Jen to me, seep with bold beauty, strength, confidence and the readiness to chase her dreams.
To her, to you, to all of us - I say, go for it. Fly.